Can a Honda Ridgeline carry a truck camper?

In this blog post, we will answer the following question: Can a Honda Ridgeline carry a truck camper? We will review the towing capacity of Honda Ridgeline trucks and the features it is equipped with. 

Can a Honda Ridgeline carry a truck camper?

A Honda Ridgeline can carry a small truck camper. Depending on the model, Honda Ridgeline has a towing capacity between 3,500 and 5,000 lbs.  When it comes to trucks, towing and payload capabilities are far more important than racing capabilities. Speaking of the new Ridgeline, even the 2021 Honda Ridgeline offers a standard 5,000-pound towing capacity, which isn’t really an impressive figure.

The lack of power means the Honda Ridgeline isn’t very good at towing heavy campers either. It’s something the dealer will make very clear to you when you test drive in the showroom. Additionally, the 2021 Honda Ridgeline has a 5.4-inch deck that offers a payload capacity of 1,580 pounds.

With a 5,000-pound towing capacity, it performs well behind GMCs and Chevrolets in its class. The Ford Ranger has the best towing capacity, despite the smallest engine, thanks to its excellent turbocharger technology and a robust 10-speed SelectsShift transmission.

Honda Ridgeline Towing Capacity

Honda Ridgeline TrimsTowing Capacity (lbs)Towing Capacity (kg)
Honda Ridgeline RT3,500 lbs. / N/A lbs. (2WD / AWD)1580 kg/N/A (2WD / AWD)
Honda Ridgeline Sport3,500 lbs. / 5,000 lbs. (2WD / AWD)1580 kg/ 2260 kg (2WD / AWD)
Honda Ridgeline RTL3,500 lbs. / 5,000 lbs. (2WD / AWD)1580 kg/ 2260 kg (2WD / AWD)
Honda Ridgeline RTL-T3,500 lbs. / 5,000 lbs. (2WD / AWD)1580 kg/ 2260 kg (2WD / AWD)
Honda Ridgeline RTL-EN/A / 5,000 lbs. (2WD / AWD)N/A kg/ 2260 kg (2WD / AWD)
Honda Ridgeline Black EditionN/A / 5,000 lbs. (2WD / AWD)N/A  kg/ 2260 kg (2WD / AWD)

Towing with a Honda Ridgeline: what if feels like

The Honda Ridgeline is a vehicle many laughed at when it was last redesigned, but let me just tell you that it is precisely the manufacturers who tried to ridicule it that are entering the segment today, which further proves once Honda was one step ahead of the competition. Finally, the Ridgeline is a versatile vehicle and all that is more serious to go on an adventure. 

It’s no secret that it shares most of its mechanical components with the Pilot. In fact, the Ridgeline also shares its platform and powertrain with the Odyssey. Yes, a van!

This division of components has proven to be effective for the Ridgeline, as it enjoys the level of refinement and handling exemplary of its rivals. Completely redesigned for the 2017 model year, the Ridgeline crosses the 2019 vintage relatively unchanged. 

Its naturally aspirated 3.5-litre V6 engine, fitted with the VTEC variable valve timing system, still produces 280 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque. The only gearbox offered is a six-speed automatic. In America, all-wheel drive is standard.

Design-wise, it looks like the front end of the vehicle has been modelled after the Pilot. There is a modern and aerodynamic grille, even three years after its appearance, more resembling that of a car than that of a truck. Likewise in the cabin, where a neat dashboard appears to have come straight from its seven-passenger brother. 

Overall, the Ridgeline’s cabin is spacious, comfortable, sophisticated and demonstrates exemplary build quality in this niche.

Small, but so versatile!

Unlike its competition, which has a little more flexibility in its cab/box configurations, the Ridgeline only comes with a double cab and 5.4ft box, making it rather small when it comes time to load large objects into it. Its 5,000 pounds (2,268 kg) towing capacity is also the lowest in the industry. It’s when it comes to versatility and driving dynamics that the Ridgeline stands out.

For example, there is a hidden compartment under its body that offers almost as much cargo space like the trunk of a mid-size sedan. It’s equipped with a drain if you want to turn it into a cooler, and the crate itself has waterproof speakers, perfect for tailgate parties. Speaking of the tailgate, the Ridgeline’s hatch opens in two ways!

The rear seat, on the other hand, is also impressively flexible with its two-part retractable system, inspired by the Magic Seat system found in the Fit and HR-V. When folded, this bench gives way to a flat floor, making it easy to load large objects, such as a shrub, a bicycle or even a large dog.

The Ridgeline’s independent suspension and car-style design give it lively handling, allowing it to tackle corners with more bite than any other pickup truck. Its powerful V6 engine responds vigorously, emitting a pleasant sound, and the automatic transmission shifts quickly and smoothly. The result of reliable and sophisticated mechanics, the Ridgeline is even more enjoyable when driven sportingly.

While its specs aren’t impressive on paper, and the price tag might seem a bit steep, especially when properly equipped, the Honda Ridgeline still fulfils a large percentage of consumers’ need for versatility.

Ultimately, it’s a well-designed compact pickup truck that retains its resale value well; an ideal vehicle for hunters, outdoor enthusiasts or owners of recreational products.

What we like:

  • Impressive versatility
  • Reliable and powerful V6 engine
  • Superb handling
  • Comfortable interior

What we don’t like:

  • Towing capacity a bit tight
  • High selling price
  • Check out a little short
  • No choice of cabin.

Is it possible to carry a tow truck camper with the new Ridgeline?

The Ridgeline was designed on the principle of split personality. Its beefy appearance stands out: big wheels, deceptively aggressive muzzle enhanced by nickel rods, welcoming platform and full of tips behind the cabin. 

Able to carry up to 717 kg of load, it can be protected by an elegant and rigid black tarpaulin ($ 1878.26) commonly known as a “tonneau cover” or, even more fun, by a tent ($ 685.33).

Many other accessories (roof rack, in particular) appear in the catalogue of this model and add to its incredible versatility. We think for example of this possibility of retracting the seats of the bench (see our photos of the interior) to maximize the utility volume. Thus configured, the interior of the Ridgeline can, for example, contain a large flat-screen television, on condition that it can cope with the rather narrow opening angle of the front doors.

The occupants, them, will not find fault. They will have access to comfortable and sufficiently cleared places. Nothing to do with the rustic comfort and cramped space of some competitors who too often plant the backs too vertically or truncate the seats.

To add to the comfort of the occupants, the Ridgeline dresses its interior with solid and impeccably fitted materials which in fact lack only a touch of originality, so much the interior presentation seems a photocopy of the other models of the mark. Another reason for dissatisfaction: the central screen, too small and not very user-friendly.

As for the back, it has plenty of practical storage space. These, cut into its floor and its walls, allow you to receive small items such as boost cables, drinks (see the video, from 1 min 10 sec, at the bottom of this article) or anything else. go through your head. The leaf, which pivots on two axes (horizontal or vertical), opens onto a somewhat high platform due to the configuration of the rear suspension.

Honda Ridgeline is a multi-task pickup

Like many competitive products, the Ridgeline is the product of a copier. The rigid chassis on which its body is deposited derives very closely from the same platform as the Pilot (and the Odyssey and the MDX). A robust architecture that allows the Ridgeline, in particular, to tow more than 2000 kg without having to resort to a host of options. 

That’s less than Colorado (Chevrolet) or Tacoma (Toyota), but it compares very favourably to the beefier utility vehicles on the market.

In an urban environment, this vehicle – more compact than it appears – is not too clumsy despite its excessively wide turning radius. But as soon as you leave the city, things improve. 

On the road, the Ridgeline behaves like a car … Powerful and lively at low revs, the 3.5L engine that powers it is efficient and outperforms all of its rivals in terms of fuel consumption. It could do even better if this mechanism could count on an increased number of gears in the box that came with it. For now, it has only six, but they have the merit of being forgotten.

Honda Ridgeline: Functionality and practicality

The other – good – surprise, it is on the road behaviour side that it is. If it’s been a long time since you’ve put your ass in a van or harboured prejudices about it, you will surely be surprised. In fact, no need to load the tipper a little to get a decent behaviour at the wheel of the new version. The body is rigid, takes little body roll and gives confidence to whoever is behind the wheel. Ridgeline provides healthy sensations. 

The steering, rack and pinion and no longer ball, is precise, direct and properly assisted. And even if the gashes and imperfections in the road sometimes cause it to jump slightly (empty bucket), this van provides astonishing comfort. Stable, the Ridgeline does not require many steering wheel corrections, even if Aeolus blows on its outer walls.

The braking system is a classic of its kind (front and rear discs) coupled with an anti-lock device (ABS) on all four wheels. Its efficiency under normal conditions is excellent, but the stopping distances remain rather long.

Faced with the deceptively utilitarian vehicles that abound on the market, the Ridgeline keeps its promises. Cleverly designed, functional and practical, this vehicle is arguably one of the best-kept secrets in the industry. In addition, it allows you to ride differently. Precious these days.

FAQ on Can a Honda Ridgeline carry a truck camper?

Can a Honda Ridgeline pull a 5th wheel?

A Honda Ridgeline can pull a small or medium-sized 5th wheel trailer, although we must mention that it has a limited towing capacity. 

Are all Honda Ridgelines AWD?

No, not all Honda Ridgelines are AWD. The Honda Ridgeline is offered in a total of 4 versions, namely: Sport, RTL, RTL-E and Black Edition. Of these, the two base models (Sport and RTL) come with an FWD transmission as standard and offer the option of AWD for an extra couple of dollars. The top two versions (RTL-E and Black Edition) have AWD transmission as standard.

How many miles will a Honda Ridgeline last?

If properly cared for with timely maintenance and service, a Honda Ridgeline can last more than 200,000 miles with ease.

Can Honda Ridgeline get off the road?

There have been several claims about the Honda Ridgeline’s off-road capability. However, following the spec sheet, we suggest that you refrain from thinking about taking your Ridgeline down an unpaved road. The reason is this truck’s low ground clearance, which can result in a scrapped underbody when it takes over some serious patches.

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